Samudrayaan Project

Why in News?
India is all geared up to undertake deep sea ocean mining in line with the ‘Samudrayaan Project’.

About the Project

  • In order to explore the deep sea region, the Union Ministry of Earth Science will launch the ‘Samudrayaan Project’. National Institute of Ocean Technology (NIOT) will undertake this pilot project and is set to be ready by 2021-22.
  • The project intends to send indigenously developed submersible vehicles with three person upto a depth of about 6000 m from the sea surface and to conduct deep underwater studies.
  • The submersible vehicles are capable to crawl on the sea bed at a depth of 6000 m for 72 hours. The ones which India possesses currently can go upto a depth of 200 m only.
  • It is line with ISRO’s ambitious ‘Gaganyaan Mission’ where it plans to send a manned spacecraft to space by 2022. The pilot project is also a part of the Rs. 6000 crore ‘Deep Sea Ocean Mission’ for deep sea mining of rare minerals.
  • The project is predicted to deeper in phases and with more trials and the deep underwater studies can be conducted from 2022.

Importance

  • On successful completion of the project, India will enjoy the elite group of the few developed countries who are involved in the exploration of minerals from the ocean. India is on the cusp of becoming the first developing country to carry out the exploration.
  • The deep underwater studies to be conducted under the project will help explore and obtain the ‘Polymetallic Nodules’ found in abundance on the sea floor of the world’s deepest ocean.
  • The International Sea Bed Authority (ISBA) has allocated India a 75k square kilometer in the Central Indian Ocean Basin for the recovery and exploration of the PMN form sea bed.
  • It has been predicted, even 10% recovery of the large reserve of PMN can meet the energy requirements of the country for the next 100 years. In times to come when the world is bound to witness acute energy crisis, these projects can prove to be pivotal to sustain human lives on the planet.


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